I get a lot of unsolicited e-mail asking me to review a new product or service, a small portion that actually gets my attention. A recent e-mail said how much the writer liked my post on inverting the pyramid, and by the way, their product enabled this —
“Now, what if you could incorporate social media practices like blogging and chat and incorporate social media feeds and video directly into the training courses? wouldn’t it be even more effective then? What if the people building the course could freely collaborate and share ideas within the course building tool and even share reusable course elements?”
I think that social media can be powerful tools for collaboration, working and learning, but they are rather useless inside a training box. Sticking blogs, RSS, chats and widgets into your training delivery system has little to do with my advice to the training department or my suggestion to learning professionals to wake up and smell the coffee.
I am advocating the closure of the training department per se. We need to get out of the training delivery mindset but that is where most vendors are stuck. Jay Cross sums up our approach at TogetherLearn:
“Next week, we will close the training department. We are shifting our focus from training to performance. Legal or the line departments can handle compliance. Any remaining training staff will become mentors, coaches, and facilitators who work on improving core business processes, strengthening relationships with customers, and cutting costs.”
That’s right, compliance can be covered by legal. Now look at what remains. Talk to the people at the coal face and find out what they really need. Few will say training. The days of developing & delivering are almost over. Connecting & Communicating should be the focus of learning and performance professionals in a networked environment.